"Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby"

A Unique Online Charity Hat Auction Benefiting Old Friends

For the second consecutive year, MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® and Old Friends are teaming up for an unparalleled online shopping experience: "Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby". This unique Derby hat fundraiser features one-of-a-kind couture Derby hats created by MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® to benefit Old Friends. To learn more about Old Friends at Dream Chase Farm and bid on the hats, please visit the Old Friends website, or call them at 502-863-1775.

For the second hat auction of this year's series, milliner Sally Faith Steinmann of MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® has created this stunning one-of-a-kind couture Derby hat in honor of Tinner's Way, one of the newest retirees at Old Friends of Kentucky.

Tinner's Way was one of the most successful colts from Secretariat's final foal crop, and may best be remembered for his back-to-back Pacific Classic (Grade 1) wins in 1994 and 1995. In mid-September 2010, arrangements were made to bring Tinner's Way from Key Ranch in Salado, Texas to Old Friends. This beautiful bay now joins one of his sons, Riva Way, from the Riva Ridge mare, Yia Yia, another resident of Old Friends.

To read more about this magnificent stallion, please click here.

Although some of Tinner's Way's greatest achievements came on the dirt tracks in America, his racing career actually began on the turf courses of Europe. To portray this talented athlete's mastery on both surfaces, a rich reddish "bay" dupioni silk with a lovely green thread running through it was chosen to reflect Tinner's achievements on the dirt and the grass.

The brim of the Tinner's Way hat measures approximately 19 inches, end to end. A unique trim design of delicious tones and textures honors Tinner's Way's conformation, the racing colors of his stable, and his impressive career as a talented athlete on multiple surfaces.

Milliner Sally Faith Steinmann states, "People ask me how I come up with the trim ideas for these hats, and all I can say is that I let the horses speak to me - and then let the magic happen." Steinmann continues, "Some of my most innovative designs in the past year are a direct result of the ways in which these magnificent equine athletes inspire me both as an artist and as a fan."

Tinner's Way's racing silk colors for the Juddmonte stable were green and pink. To reflect these colors, a stunning trim design was created by combining a palette of bluish-green tones with a medley of pink tones. The design begins with a layer of soft rose-colored tulle draped over the entire surface of the crown. This gives a soft, wispy background for the bold trim elements that are then layered upon it.

A bluish-green shantung sash encircles the crown of the hat. This same fabric was used to create a lavish bow for the back of the hat. Lined with a deep rose satin, this unique bow features cascading ties that spill from beneath it, curling back and forth to give a feeling of movement to the design.

An innovative multi-layered floral confection is the centerpiece of the Tinner's Way chapeau. Four luscious peonies adorn the hat. The three larger ones represent Tinner's Way's Grade 1 wins in the Pacific Classic in 1994 and 1995, and the Californian Stakes in 1996. A slightly smaller peony reflects his win in the Golden Gate Fields Budweiser Breeders’ Cup Handicap in 1995.

The petals for each peony were fashioned from complementary pink fabrics which were layered to accentuate each of the different materials and to make the flowers come alive. The bottom petal layer was created using rose pink organza; the middle layer, a soft blush pink dupioni silk; and finally the top layer, an even softer powder pink organza. The center of each peony was filled with a deep rose satin and rose organza rose curl swirled together to complete a scrumptious peony design that almost seems real! Bluish-green shantung was used to create variegated leaves that elegantly frame each of the flowers and add just the right finishing touch.

The purpose of this amazing millinery delight is to honor the life of Tinner's Way and all of the horses who, thanks to the generosity of those who support their aftercare, now graze in the warm sunshine of Dream Chase Farm for the rest of their lives.

This amazing millinery delight will be up for bid from December 1st through the 11th, 2010. At the end of the month, the winning bidder's name will be announced (unless they prefer to remain anonymous).

Bid as many times and on as many hats as you like during this running auction. For further information about the eBay bidding process, please contact Old Friends at 502-863-1775. If you don't desire to place a bid on a hat, please contact Old Friends to see about what other ways you might be able to help out at Dream Chase Farm.

Freight charges will be at the expense of the winning bidder. Winning bidders, please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery of your hat in order to ensure proper sizing.

To view the couture Derby hats from previous auctions, please click on the following - Old Friends Hat Auction Portfolio.